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Benefits of Forest School

The benefits of attending Forest School are many and far-reaching, but also difficult to measure. Below we list some, but by no means all, of the benefits of Forest School on various aspects of a person’s life or development.

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Healthier bodies

• increased frequency of physical exercise
• a challenging environment that helps to develop motor skills
• fresh open air allows dispersal of viruses
• learning to prepare and cook healthy food

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Healthier minds

• space and resources are naturally available, allowing individuals or groups to investigate and problem solve
• an opportunity to be sociable and also to have time alone
• time to just be, where individuals can relax and explore interests
• personal motivation
• a willingness to try new tasks
• the ability to persist at tasks increases

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Healthier environment

• an understanding & appreciation of the natural environment through experience
• knowledge of how systems interlink, and how we affect our surroundings
• spending time in the environment and using it to play and learn effects us at a deep level
• this connection with nature opens us up to care more for the environment as adults

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Healthier future

• many of the skills that develop as a result of spending time at a Forest School are essential life skills that in time will benefit the economy
• children develop determination to complete tasks and manage risks
• they learn to work together as a team communicating effectively
• the environment stimulates the use of descriptive language, mathematical problem solving, calculating and taking acceptable risks, working towards personal reward

Girls In Hammock

Healthier communities

• Forest Schools can offer the opportunity to involve parents & the wider community in their development & running
• families are more likely to access woodland spaces & spend time playing in and enjoying the outdoors if they have been involved with the development
• often the whole school shifts its approach to outdoor learning as staff have the opportunity to observe children in a different setting
• this has a knock-on effect as techniques can be applied across other learning

For more on the benefits of spending time outdoors visit

FS research & reports

We've gathered together work by academics & professionals looking into the quantitative and qualitative benefits of Forest School.

These reports & research are, as much as possible, arranged in chronological order, most recent at the top

Read More about FS research & reports

Nature connection & nature deficit

A comprehensive reference section on Nature Deficit Disorder and the importance of nature connection - one of the key components of Forest School - with research & reports, blogs & articles, video and more.

Research, reports, news items etc, are, as much as possible, arranged in chronological order, most recent at the top

Read More about Nature connection & nature deficit

Research, reports: health, wellbeing

Evidence for the benefits to children of outdoor play and learning & spending time in nature.

Arranged in chronological order, most recent at the top

Read More about Research, reports: health, wellbeing
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